Contribute to GOMI with every purchase

Make your AMAZON purchases count
Many of us do shop on line and use Amazon for some purchases. As a means of making contributions to GOMI easier and broader based GOMI has been registered with Amazon’s Smile charity.  If you purchase anything from Amazon you may have 0.5% of your purchase price go to GOMI, no extra cost to you.  All you need to do is start each shopping session at the URL http://smile.amazon.com, be sure GOMI is your designated charity (you need to set this in your account file) and Amazon we will donate 0.5% of the price of your eligible purchases to GOMI.  Again no cost to you, and if many of us choose to do this, the donations can add up… especially for a small non-profit such as GOMI.  So please take advantage of this opportunity and also tell your friends or colleagues who may be interested in supporting GOMI.  Its actually a great way for those who are buying things via Amazon to contribute to GOMI without having to reach any deeper into their pockets.
Please see http://smile.amazon.com/about for program details.
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Search for Alumni

We are informing you about an exciting alumni initiative that Cyrus Woodman and Derek Stehlin (GOMI alumni) have decided to take on in 2015 with the hopes that some of you may be able to help us out! Over the years, GOMI has touched and influenced so many young individuals. GOMI relationships have been made, lessons have been taught and progress has been achieved. So Derek and I are asking themselves – “where are all those alumni?”

With that being said, the two are currently working with GOMI leadership to build stronger alumni relationships via an Alumni Association, which can only add more power to the GOMI initiative! So many of our alumni have moved on to fabulous schools, noteworthy employers and meaningful causes. The GOMI breed now goes back more than 14 years and continues to grow!

Derek and Cyrus are quite basically going to attempt to unite and reconnect the GOMI alumni! Hopefully, if all goes well, they will be able to leverage the strengths of our alumni base and benefit current students and future generations of GOMI. Our first challenge here will be to pull together alumni contacts and that’s primarily what we informing you about today. As a member of the web we think you may be able to offer us the alumni contact information that we’re on the hunt for.

If you’re able to help us on our mission, we’re hoping to get the following information for any and all alumni:

-Name
-Email
-Phone
-HS Year of Graduation

We’ll be using this information to create a database for our alumni efforts moving forward and any help from you all would be greatly appreciated!

We look forward to hearing back from you and keeping you informed as this moves forward in the future!

Contacts are:

Cyrus + Derek
[email protected]
[email protected]

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Community interaction

One of the goals of GOMI is to have youth involved in community affairs. Abi Moore attended her first meeting of 8 towns and the Great Marsh, a regional environmental Board, representing the coastal communities of Essex County, Newburyport. GOMI had two students representing their city. Here is Abi’s thorough report to the Mayor.

8 Towns and A Great Marsh Meeting: March

In Attendance: Jay Baker Peter and Alicia Moore Jeff Walker Nathaniel Mulkay and Spouse Peter Phippen Deb Carey

The meeting began with a powerpoint presentation made by Peter Phippen on the topic of Great Marsh Restoration. He spoke to the topics of ecological restoration, dune nourishment, eelgrass planting, as well as the assessment, modeling and prioritization of hydrologic barriers, all of which will be executed with the use of the federal grant of 323,000, as well as fundings from collaborators totaling approximately 2.9 million in grants.

The slideshow went into more depth of native salt marsh restoration, including plans to plant eelgrass on 3 acres of land already picked out in Plum Island and Essex. Eelgrass is important to this area because it prevents erosion by anchoring its roots to seafloor sediment and slowing water flow. It has been 75 years since eelgrass have been planted locally, and has been found growing locally in only one location. The plans to plant eelgrass in these locations this summer will involve The Student Conservation Association by the utilization of their volunteers, and possibly the hiring, training and employing of students. In terms of hydrologic barriers, all will be assessed and the top 100 will be prioritized and redesigned.

Peter touched upon the points of dune restoration on Plum Island and Salisbury beach, as well as sediment transport on and off land outside Plum Island and into Essex. In addition to budgeting for these things, another aspect of what the grant will be used for is community resilience planning, with town level task forces in case of emergency. This finalized Peter Phippen’s presentation on the topic of grant spending for the Great Marsh Restoration project.

Following Peter’s presentation was Jay Baker, who used to work with Peter at Mass Bay and was part of state government for thirteen years before he quit his job to become an oyster farmer. He talked about his oyster farming endeavors, and his business, “Fat Dog Shellfish Company”, and their strategies for growing the best oysters. He spoke about the importance of oyster farming here, as it reduces turbidity and so, promotes the growth of eelgrass. Shellfish populations are greatly declining, and the hard shells grown together show evidence of commensalism or benefiting from growing together, so planting oysters will also increase clam and mussel populations.

Jay Baker introduced Nathaniel Mulkay to do his presentation on aquaculture. Nathaniel started with a brief history of aquaculture, the farming of aquatic plants or animals for food, explaining how the Romans invented it due to a need for more oysters than they could fish. He also informed the group that Plum Island’s depuration plant was the worlds first. He told us that New England’s clam population is in a very bad place currently, going from 52,908 bushels in 1997, to 2,626 bushels in 2014. He talked about his own experiments farming razor clams, which he has found a successful way to do, and hope will provide the necessary diversification for a healthy clam population. Mulkay also talked about how he had developed a pellet stove that can burn phragmite pellets, something the group was interested in speaking to him in greater depth about.

The meeting came to an end after Nathaniel Mulkay’s presentation.

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Newbury team studies Merrimack River water quality

Click on the photo for full story.

Team

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In With the Tide – Fall 2014

Click on the link to read the newsletter and find out about adventures of the Digby Neck / Islands team!

Fall 2014 issue word II_web (1)

in with tide

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In with the Tides newsletter

Click on the link to read the newsletter and find out about adventures of the Digby Neck / Islands team!

Summer 2014 issue word PDF2_web

Tide

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ICS, O2, GOMI, and BoFDCA Fall Project

by Roger Outhouse

That complex series of letters is to introduce a rather simple overdue project of building a trail on school property to the old Fundy Shore Road which extends from Highway 217 to the Freeport Brook. Joan O’Neil approached the Bay of Fundy Discovery Centre Association (BoFDCA) with a request to assist her Options and Opportunities (O2) class in planning and supplying tools to construct a short trail behind Islands Consolidated School (ICS) that would create a short safe route to Lovers Lane.

The Gulf of Maine Institute (GOMI) youth environmental team had decided a year ago to be supportive of such projects that are sustainable and positive for communities in our area of Digby Neck and Islands. Since many of that team are also O2 students it was an opportunity to fulfill the goals of our talented youth.

Once the trail was plotted out connecting school to the road, students in grades 11 and 12 created the trail space within three work sessions. Watching them work as a team was a real statement as to how we can all be proud of what can be achieved when youth are involved in leading such initiatives.

The trail can be used but over the next little while there are other improvements to be made including extending the trail by clearing the old road that extends to the Freeport Brook. For at least a decade the possibility of walking to the brook has become very difficult. Thanks to everyone involved in the ongoing project; a perfect example of what can happen with cooperation.

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Islands/Digby Neck team building trails

Presenting a small photo gallery on the GOMI team building a new walking trail in their area. Click on image for larger view.

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More on the drifter!

Click on image for full story and a video!

Sorry but there is a short advertisement.

drifter

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NE Gulf Drifter found in Nova Scotia

Drifters Are Among Us,  Roger Outhouse

On September 26th 2014 four optimistic souls struck out from the Centreville, Digby County, wharf in search of a marine drifter. This type of drifter is a device constructed to float on the surface with underwater sails which carry it by ocean currents rather than the wind.

This one was the creation of the New Hampshire Science Teachers Association in New England. It was launched it in early July, 2014. Equipped with a transmitter, a drifter sends signals to satellites which then track the entire journey.

Over a number of years there have been hundreds of launches throughout the Gulf of Maine. In recent years the Gulf of Maine Institute (GOMI) youth teams along with other groups have become involved in construction and monitoring a number of drifters around the Gulf. NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) is overseeing the data collected and this continually adds to the knowledge of our marine waters and currents throughout the eastern seaboard from New England to the Bay of Fundy and even to the Atlantic Ocean off of Barrington, Nova Scotia. They can be programmed to test for a number of features including currents, temperatures, salinity, etc. Currently this information is being used to understand and in some instances help marine wildlife. The transmitter works continuously for months under the toughest conditions our ocean throws at it and never quits till the battery runs out or it is dashed to pieces on the shores like this one.

photoThis transmitter was barely visible as it was separated from its sails which had vanished. Close by, buried under a pile of rockweed were the remnants of its aluminum structure and float. Not only did we have an opportunity to watch this dramatic voyage unfold on the internet map but we were more excited to discover its resting place and bring its story to an end. Hopefully the transmitter will still be strong enough to be transplanted to a new drifter and another voyage to sea in its future.

To view the trail this drifter took, its track is posted at http://www.nefsc.noaa.gov/drifter/drift_nhsta_2014_1.html.

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